London is a cool city in every sense of the word. Unless, of course, when it's summer then it becomes one of the hottest destinations out there... literally! Because it's such a crowded city full of different districts
and populous areas, it can get pretty heard here in the British capital. Despite its reputation as a cloudy city, it does get its occasional heatwaves every now and then. And it's during these summer days that people escape to the nearby beaches. Botany Bay in Broadstairs and Isle of Grain Beach in Kent are just some of the most well-known coasts near London that can give you the summer breeze that you need!
Botany Bay in Broadstairs
Botany Bay is the kind of place that adrenaline junkies would love. Lined with white cliffs, each taller than the next, hiking or rock-climbing are the names of the game. Though of course, during summer, it's all about swimming in the sea. Since this is one of the beaches near London that have a sandy shoreline, it's also one of the best for diving into the salty waters. At low tide, it's even shallow enough that you can let your little ones toddle about at sea. Whether it's the cool waters or the cool winds from atop the cliffs, you'll definitely feel a good chill on Botany Bay.
Source: Flickr.com/ diamond geezer
Cuckmere Haven in Seaford
From afar, Cuckmere Haven is a stunning coast that deserves to be on a painting hung in a London art gallery
. Its scenic plains and white cliffs practically match the white waves on the shoreline, making for quite the Instagram-worthy sight. Located 90 minutes from the British capital, you'll want to leave pretty early in the morning in order to get back within the day. But all that effort in going here would not be wasted. Cuckmere Haven is a beautiful escape that you'd wish would remain untouched. Its natural beauty trumps even the white sandy paradises in the Mediterranean and Southeast Asia.
Source: Flickr.com/ weesam2010
Whitstable Beach in Kent
It will only take an hour and five minutes to get to Whitstable Beach from London. And yet, when you get here, you'll feel as if you traveled to the other side of the country. Far from the sprawling metropolis that is the British capital, all you'll see on this enchanting coast in Kent are seas, sand, and lush green planes. Though the beach is now lined with colorful houses, the area remains largely untouched. It's the same pebbly shoreline that has existed for thousands, possibly even millions of years. You'll want to put on your aqua shoes
if you want to have fun by the sea here.
Source: Wikimedia Commons/ Sc597
Isle of Grain Beach in Kent
Another great coast near London that's also in Kent is the Isle of Grain Beach. Located only an hour from the city, Londoners and locals alike will tell you that it's the closest 'proper beach
' you can escape to. England, as a whole, isn't exactly a sunny county. Yet on the Isle of Grain Beach, the sun shines as brightly as it would in the French Riviera
. Hence, many people consider this a 'proper beach' for summer. It's the kind of seaside paradise that you'd expect in more exotic destinations. But be warned, this place also has a pebbly shoreline.
Source: Wikimedia Commons
East Head at West Wittering in Chichester
After all these pebbly beaches, you'll want to go on a sandy coast near London next, right? Then it's a good thing that East Head at West Wittering near Chichester is located only an hour and a half away from the British capital. You can easily plan a day trip here again and again. But if you want to stay here for a while, surely there are a few luxury rentals you can spot along the way too. Overall, this is the white sandy shoreline you're asking for. Even the path leading up the coast is already sandy! If you rock summer sandals
here, you'll need to take out the sand before you return to your car!
Source: Wikimedia Commons/ Peter Facey / Northern tip of East Head spit / CC BY-SA 2.0
Climping Beach in Littlehampton
Also known as 'Atherington,' Littlehampton's Climping Beach is a peaceful beach near London. It will only take you 90 minutes to get here, and if you leave early in the morning, you can reach this place right as the sun is rising. And as far as beach fun goes, you'll need to put your aqua shoes on because the shoreline here is pretty pebbly. They don't, however, detract from the beauty of the place. Or the excitement of the strong waves. It even comes to a point that at high tide, it might be too dangerous for kids to go swimming here.
Source: Flickr.com/ Mark
Shoreham Beach in West Sussex
Although Brighton Beach is the more famous coast in this part of the country, Shoreham Beach is just as good. Some would even argue that it's better precisely because it's the lesser-known beach. During summer, Brighton Beach gets pretty packed even though it has a pebbly shoreline. Shoreham Beach, on the other hand, rarely gets as busy, making it the perfect coastal escape for you to keep cool. Though just as pebbly, at least you won't face a multitude of beachgoers here. Even if you don't want to swim, you can easily lay out a blanket (hopefully a thick one) and sit on Shoreham Beach as the sea breezes brush up your face.
Source: Wikimedia Commons/ Simon Carey / Shoreham Beach and Power Station / CC BY-SA 2.0.
Birling Gap in East Sussex
On the other side of the area, in East Sussex, there's Birling Gap. Now here's yet another stunning coast near London worth the 90-minute drive! Just like Botany Bay, the high cliffs that line the seaside are great for rock-climbing and scenic photoshoots. And if you're simply wanting to cool off, you don't have to go down the pebbly shoreline either. You can just as easily enjoy the sea breezed from atop the cliffs. It's also a great spot to watch the sunset! Viewing it from up here will undoubtedly be one of your fondest memories in England!
Source: Flickr.com/ Dave_S.
London can get pretty hot at times. So much so that the only way to cool off is to escape to the nearest beaches. Don't worry! Though the British capital is rather metropolitan, the coasts near London are practically a whole different world!